2022 journal article
Developing advanced therapeutics through the study of naturally occurring immune-mediated ocular disease in domestic animals
AMERICAN JOURNAL OF VETERINARY RESEARCH, 83(11).
ABSTRACT This review, which is part of the “Currents in One Health” series, describes the importance of the study of immune-mediated ocular disease in the development of innovative therapeutics, such as cell and gene therapy for the eye. Recent examples of cell and gene therapy studies from the author’s laboratory are reviewed to emphasize the importance of One Health initiatives in developing innovative therapies for ocular diseases. Spontaneous immune-mediated corneal disease is common in horses, cats, dogs, and humans. Autologous bone marrow-derived mesenchymal stem cells (BM-MSCs) injected subconjunctivally resulted in the resolution of naturally occurring immune-mediated keratitis (IMMK) without adverse effects. These results support that autologous subconjunctival BM-MSC therapy may be a viable treatment alternative for IMMK. Furthermore, the use of subconjunctival MSCs may be an effective method to treat ocular surface immune-mediated diseases in humans and other species, including herpetic stromal keratitis and immunologic dry eye disease. Furthermore, the use of adeno-associated viral (AAV) vectors to deliver the immunosuppressive transgene cDNA of equine interleukin 10 (eqIL-10) or human leukocyte antigen G injected intravitreally was shown to be safe and inhibited the development of uveitis in the experimental autoimmune uveitis rat model. Efficacy and safety studies of ocular gene therapy in models will pave the way for clinical trials in animals with naturally occurring immune-mediated diseases, such as a therapeutic clinical trial for AAV-eqIL-10 in horses with equine recurrent uveitis.